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Significant support for the VBS business model has come in three forms: a free entrepreneurial course for Veterans; a free entrepreneurial bootcamp for Veterans; and free professional services for Veteran small business start-ups. These three key support services came from three different places: Project Opportunity, sponsored by a local Chamber of Commerce; EBV at Purdue University; and ACPIA through Veterans Fast Launch, a program of SCORE in partnership with the White House’s Joining Forces Initiative. What all three of these services have in common is Walmart, who provided financial support for each and in doing so has taken a leadership role in small business support for Veteran entrepreneurs, both at a local and national level.

Given Walmart’s major support for hiring Veterans, their actions supporting Veterans in small business are not that surprising. Recently the corporation committed to hiring over 100,000 Veterans. VBS was honored to not only receive the support listed above, but to tell its story and receive public praise from around 50 enthusiastic Associates at a Walmart store in Salisbury, Maryland. Over the past few years there’s been a lot a talk about “reintegrating” Veterans in communities; we often assume that just means getting a Veteran a job or an opportunity. VBS thanks Walmart for supporting our efforts to match Veterans with small business opportunities. Veteran entrepreneurs definitely should check out the free services listed above. They are more than free, they’re helpful and fantastic!

*Photograph courtesy of Dallas Morning News

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